Faculty expertise database updated, improved
To help business, industry, government, and media representatives find Virginia Tech faculty members and graduate students with specific expertise, the Office of the Vice President for Research has expanded the Virginia Tech Expertise Database and made it easier to use.
Enter “honey bees” and you find Rick Fell in entomology. Enter “insects” and you find more people, with their expertise spelled out, links to homepages, and contact information.
The database currently indexes more than 1,700 Virginia Tech experts. The individuals provide different levels of information, which can include memberships, publications, patents, awards and honors, qualifications, research funding, and employment history, as well as an expertise summary.
Previously, if one were looking for a faculty member with a particular expertise, the database could be searched by topic, name, or department. Now one may also browse the entire database or limit results by college and department on topic and name searches.
The Virginia Tech Expertise Database has expanded data from the previous version and includes graduate student information.
“At a research university, graduate students are active researchers and can also be an important resource for people looking for expertise,” said Brad Fenwick, vice president for research.
A special feature is help with searches. “If your search returns no results, the database will display possible keywords as you type in a special secondary search box,” said Neil Sedlak, information technology manager in the Office of the Vice President for Research.
Researchers may also use the database to find potential colleagues for joint research or internal sources of information.